The biggest fallacy that will plague Bridge to Terabithia is that it is just another childrens movie, from Disney no less. The second biggest fallacy would be that it will be reminiscent of The Chronicles of Narnia especially since its true strength lies in director Gabor Csupos weaving of My Girl tropes with an intelligent insight into sporadic retreats into childhood repositories of imagination and the painful realisation of burgeoning adult responsibilities. It recalls innocence found and innocence lost at that tender age when you are no longer a child and not a grown-up just yet.
Just as in Csupos Rugrats movies and television series, a real knack is shown when fully developed adult matters are delicately handled in the context of a children's movie that never shies away from asking one or two tough questions. This obviously poses a dilemma of sorts for parents that expect reasonably light-hearted fare, which Bride to Terabithia definitely is not. So instead of an escapist romp, children and parents alike end up with something much more meaningful that could possibly offer kids more than just fanciful distraction. Addressing socioeconomic issues, faith and the certainty of familial tethers, the film approaches it with a measure of daring confidence a refreshing trait that never undermines the audiences potential to appreciate reality side by side their CGI. This is the quintessential coming of age film for children on the cusp of their teenage years.
Possibly the most effective decision that ends up grounding the films flights of fancy would be the unpretentious and utterly rudimentary design of its fantasy sequences that are so restraint that it refuses to distract from the pertinent issues. It trenches the story in realism and becomes a clever reflexive tool when audiences are forced to look beneath the shimmering special effects and see its true significance of the materials amazingly sensitive portrayal of young psyches.
Anchored around the introverted Jess (Josh Hutcherson) and the sprightly new girl in school, Leslie (AnnaSophia Robb), the story introduces them as unlikely friends that grow to need each other as time goes on. An interesting dynamic that yields numerous nuances is that Jess is the only boy in a big family of sisters. His loneliness and isolation is attributed to circumstances at home causing it to be rather ironic or perhaps even natural, that his best friend turned out to be a girl.
Bridge to Terabithia is a distinct novelty in the realm of childrens films that usually begin by applying artifice first before attempting to fit in the essentials of youth and heartfelt aspects of real life. It actually cares about the ideals that it endeavours to inculcate and becomes a triumphant testament to the truths we have faced that made us who we are. This film extols a whole different kind of magic than youd expect.